BERLIN, March 27 German business morale
brightened unexpectedly in March, a survey showed on Monday,
suggesting company executives in Europe's largest economy are
brushing off concerns about the threat of rising protectionism.
The Munich-based Ifo economic institute said its business
climate index, based on a monthly survey of some 7,000 firms,
rose to 112.3 from an upwardly revised reading of 111.1 in
This was the highest reading since July 2011 and it came in
stronger than a Reuters consensus forecast for 111.0.
"The upswing in the German economy is gaining impetus," Ifo
chief Clemens Fuest said in a statement, adding that the upwards
trend in assessments of the current business situation continued
unabated and the business outlook also improved.
The rise in the headline figure was driven by improved
sentiment in the manufacturing, construction and retailing
sectors, while the business climate in wholesaling deteriorated.
(Reporting by Michael Nienaber; Editing by Paul Carrel)